Skip to main content
Premium Trial:

Request an Annual Quote

Peaks and Valleys in the Private Sector

At the Nature News blog, Barbara Casassus says that "fallout from the economic crisis continues to cast a pall over the French life-science sector." The number of new firms formed in the country fell 47.8 percent — from 46 to 24 — between 2010 and 2011, and company closures jumped from five in 2008 to 25 in 2011 — an increase of 400 percent — Casassus reports.

In a recent Nature Biotechnology feature, Brady Huggett says that while "the private biotech sector has contracted slightly in recent years," the observed squeeze appears to be "due to attrition in existing privately held companies, rather than to a decline in the number of biotech ventures founded or a big jump in exits." Huggett adds that while funding has tightened, returns on investments made in the industry have risen. "In 2010, the internal rate of return for investments in biotech, biopharma, and R&D was the highest on record since 1999, according to Cambridge Associates, even as the number of healthcare companies invested in was at its lowest since before the genomics bubble," he reports.

The Scan

Billions for Antivirals

The US is putting $3.2 billion toward a program to develop antivirals to treat COVID-19 in its early stages, the Wall Street Journal reports.

NFT of the Web

Tim Berners-Lee, who developed the World Wide Web, is auctioning its original source code as a non-fungible token, Reuters reports.

23andMe on the Nasdaq

23andMe's shares rose more than 20 percent following its merger with a special purpose acquisition company, as GenomeWeb has reported.

Science Papers Present GWAS of Brain Structure, System for Controlled Gene Transfer

In Science this week: genome-wide association study ties variants to white matter stricture in the brain, and more.